best golf resorts in Michigan
Grand Traverse Resort, one of the best golf resorts in Michigan. Credit: Grand Traverse Resort, Bear course

Looking at the Great Lake State for your next golfing vacation? Great idea! It’s potentially one of the best places to play and observe terrific green courses in the whole of North America. However, if you’ve never been to Michigan before, the prospect of booking such a trip can be quite daunting. We’ve got you covered however with a round-up of the best golf resorts in the state.

ResortLodgingGreen FeesBook
Crystal Mountain$135$55Book
Grand Traverse Resort$216$70Book
Garland Lodge and Resortquote$115Book
Otsego Club$193$35Book
Shanty Creek$150$45Book
Drummond Island Resort$139$31Book
The Inn at Harbor Shores$199$100Book
Riverwood Resort$169$37Book
Arcadia Bluffs$220$150Book

1. Crystal Mountain, Thompsonville

Crystal Mountain
Credit: Crystal Mountain

Lodging rate from: $135
Green Fees from: $55
Book your stay: official resort site

Crystal Mountain might be the idyllic holiday for all families looking to escape the stresses of everyday life and overbearing technology. Smartphones are swapped for all glory of the great outdoors, where trekking, adventure trails, skiing, and even scenic gondola rides are favored.

Hang on, what about the golf? Well, there’s no shortage of golfing opportunities. Two massive courses spanning 36 holes have both received four-star ratings from the prestigious Golf Digest magazine, meaning its quality play here. Total golf newbies don’t have to jump in at the deep end either with the on-site golf school and learning center there to offer an introduction to the game as well as advanced coaching.

It’s a true getaway in this resort with stunning views of Lake Michigan from the apex points, as well as being surrounded by rich forest land. Be sure to plan ahead as not all activities are available all the time due to seasonal conditions.

2. Grand Traverse Resort and Spa, Acme

Grand Traverse Resort and Spa
Credit: Grand Traverse Resort and Spa

Lodging rate from: $216
Green Fees from: $70
Book your stay: official resort site

If you’ve ever considered going to Michigan for golf or read literature on the topic, you’ve likely heard of The Bear at the Grand Traverse Resort and Spa. This is an iconic Michigan golf course, as it’s been noted as one of the most difficult courses to play on in the US.

Of course, it’s not just for experienced golfers who want a challenge. There are two other courses on-site as well as an academy for improving your game and multiple golfing events taking place on the resort. After a long day of golf, you can unwind at the decked-out spa facilities which will take you to a heavenly ibis of relaxation.

If you’re considering bringing the entire family here, then you can’t go much wrong given the Den area has a wide selection of entertainment options outside of the golf course. Including axe throwing, an escape room, and much more!  These features come in really useful if adverse weather rains off your golf plans.

That being said, Michigan has plenty of exciting mini golf courses for family activity. If you’re on a road trip, consider checking our list of the best Michigan’s mini golf.

3. Garland Lodge and Resort, Lewiston

Garland Lodge and Resort
Credit: Garland Lodge and Resort

Lodging rate from: custom quote
Green Fees from: $115
Book your stay: official resort site

Up in the uppermost Northern stretches of Michigan sits the Garland Lodge & Resort. If you’re looking for green spaces with a throwback to oldy-worldy times with cabins and lodges, then you’re in the right place. Championship-grade golfing experiences are on offer here as it has 72 holes across three exceptional courses.

The resort is ideal for a retreat weekend or extended stay with three distinct restaurants serving wholesome and casual fare. The facilities also include multiple aqua outlets featuring indoor and outdoor swimming pools, jacuzzi, etc. If that isn’t enough for you there are other pastimes like canoeing experiences, American Bald Eagle viewing, and even the opportunity to go fishing.

4. Otsego Club, Gaylord

Otsego Club
Credit: Otsego Club

Lodging rate from: $193
Green Fees from: $35
Book your stay: official resort site

Overviewing the Canadian border, the Otsego Resort offers delightful high-quality golf courses. The two courses were designed with PGA Championship experiences in mind with both William H. Diddel and Rick Robbins wanting to put players through their paces.

If you get too frustrated with your par on the course, the Otsego Resort offers plenty more outlets for fun, including snow sports with some naturally blessed slopes. The dining options are also well-known in the area for offering fine grill options and have been recognized as one of the best wine vendors in the area for their exceptional menu offerings.

Be sure to check out the seasonal weather forecast for the area and/or plan your trip accordingly to regional variations. While the Otsego Resort is open all year round, the activities you can participate in will vary greatly depending on the time and weather conditions.

*As we’re talking about planning, be sure to check our article about the best time of the year for a golf trip to help you plan your next golf trip.

5. Shanty Creek, Bellaire

Shanty Creek
Credit: Shanty Creek

Lodging rate from: $150
Green Fees from: $45
Book your stay: official resort site

Seen to many as the ultimate destination for Michigan golfers, Shanty Creek has attracted many players throughout its 60 years of existence. Why is it such a good place to play golf? 90 holes across five courses should answer that question. Of course, this includes the iconic Hawk’s Eye course with 50% water hazard and multiple accolades. Two of which include applause from GolfAdvisor as the course has been rated one of Michigan’s best courses, while also stating the course layout is within the top 25 within the US.

However, this isn’t just a place for distinguished golfers as the academy caters to all abilities. If you bring your kids they can play or you can get some pointers on how to perfect your swing. Better yet, the academy runs a Ladies Golf School (women only) which can be really useful for females who want to get into golf.

The resort has a wide array of lodging options and when the weather is right you can go skiing too. It’s an ideal place to stay for a weekend with something to do for everyone within your group.

Shanty Creek offers one of the best golf packages in Northern Michigan. Check out the complete list here: 9 best stay and play packages in Northern Michigan.

6. Drummond Island Resort, Drummond

Drummond Island Resort
Credit: Drummond Island Resort

Lodging rate from: $139
Green Fees from: $31
Book your stay: official resort site

Drummond Island Resort houses the exceptional golf course, The Rock. The esteemed golfing architect, Harry Bowers constructed this course utilizing all of the natural lush qualities of the surrounding 400 acres. The 18-hole championship course has been enjoyed by a wealth of players throughout its history.

Yet the resort has lots more on offer too. This natural paradise allows holidaymakers and visitors to enjoy the great outdoors with hiking, cycling, kayaking, and even bird-watching activities. Adrenaline junkies are also catered for with off-roading courses to drive with 4×4 vehicles and a paintballing activity center.

It’s so nice from the pictures here and even better when you get there! Why not extend your stay by booking the stay-and-play package here, which is noted as one of the best golf packages in the state.

7. The Inn at Harbor Shores, St Joseph

The Inn at Harbor Shores
Credit: The Inn at Harbor Shores

Lodging rate from: $199
Green Fees from: $100
Book your stay: official resort site

You’ve heard of Jack Nicklaus, right? The fabled American golfer won over 100 golf tournaments, including 18 major tournaments between the 1960s and 80s. While playing on his signature course at The Inn at Harbor Shore won’t make you play like him, you know it is going to be of quality for him to put his name to it.

The resort facilities boast incredible experiences for guests with a fitness center, art gallery, and spa. Of course, as the complex is on the harbor, guests can enjoy the marine life coming and going by the waterfront as well as take to the water themselves in a cycle or paddle boat.

This resort might be one of the more convenient resorts in the entirety of Michigan. While visitors from Detroit and Indianapolis have somewhat equidistant travel by car (around 3 hours drive), the Inn at Harbor Shores is much closer to Chicago, (less than 2 hours by car). Given Chicago is one of the better cities in the US for transportation and infrastructure, it makes this resort very accessible to both domestic and international players.

8. Riverwood Resort, Mt Pleasant

Riverwood Resort
Credit: Riverwood Resort

Lodging rate from: $169
Green Fees from: $37
Book your stay: official resort site

Nestled in central Michigan sits Riverwood Resort. Aptly named as the resort sits by the Chippewa River. Bruce Mathews III designed this 18-hole championship course, dividing it into two distinct halves, the White Course and the Red Course are relatively challenging as both sections have a par of 36. Subsequently, GolfAdvisor has stated that this is a ‘must-play course’ within Michigan.

Some resorts are very well decked out with outdoor entertainment but can become a little problematic if unexpected adverse weather stops you from playing golf or any of the other outdoor exclusive experiences. The Riverwood Resort has got it covered however with an indoor golf simulator to allow you to play golf at any time no matter if there’s a tropical storm outside. Better yet, there’s a bowling lane as well.

9. Arcadia Bluffs, Arcadia

Arcadia Bluffs
Credit: Arcadia Bluffs

Lodging rate from: $220
Green Fees from: $150
Book your stay: official resort site

The Arcadia Bluffs Golf Club is a refined establishment. It’s a high-class golf club for the golf-adoring public and not totally suitable for those who don’t want to spend every passing minute of their holiday playing golf.

The Bluffs Course sells itself as it is regularly ranked as one of the best golf courses in Michigan (including in our list) owing to its panoramic views of Lake Michigan, the natural sand dunes, and varying levels of difficulty. Check out the complete list here: the 10 best golf courses in Michigan.

After playing golf all day, players are expected to dine at one of the restaurants on the premises. Here fine dining is championed to the nth degree. Expect filet steak, charcuterie boards, and a whole lot of pate.

Now that you know the best golf resorts, check out our article on how to plan a golf trip for a fantastic golfing experience.

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